Reading Development: Fuel the Imagination With a Fairytale
I was born in Ireland at the time when storytellers came to our home to share a fairytale or two. This in turn gave me and my ten siblings a zest for reading. We took the stories they relayed to their attentive audience as gospel, and incorporated them into our childhood adventures. We read every adventure book we could get our hands on.
The influence of the storytellers and reading adventure books certainly contributed to our wealthy and happy childhood. Not monetary wealth, as back in the sixties in Ireland that type of lifestyle didn't exist. My parents carried that burden on their shoulders, while we carried on with our wonderful childhood.
Our imaginations ran riot and everything we did was an ongoing adventure, and guaranteed to be continued on the next outing.
In our strides, we dealt with typical home issues, school issues, friend issues and a variety of other issues that came down the turn pike. But for some reason, issues never took over our mindset. The storytellers and adventure books were far more important. Hence, our characters were molded and our resilient uniqueness was created.
As children we were never encouraged to read, we just read. It was par for the course. We had nothing but our storytellers, our books and our imaginations, and yet we had it all.
Now reading is an issue for many kids. Yes, a lot of kids read and enjoy it, but a lot of kids won't pick up a book. There are all kinds of foundations and organizations working hard towards getting children to read and enjoy it. Libraries are constantly putting on story time and a handful of kids will be there with their parents, grandparents or chaperones.
Why is that? Is it because there are too many other distractions for both children and parents? Has life in the twenty-first century taken hold of all of us? This era of convenience and the world at our fingertips is overwhelming. There are simply not enough hours in the day to fit in the much-needed and critical downtime anymore.
Our children are on fast forward with us. If we don't stop and take time out for them and ourselves to enjoy the simplest of pleasures like storytelling, their young, adventurous, make-believe lives will pass them by and suddenly they are teenagers, who missed out on the most imaginative time of their lives.
Children are the same now as they were way back then and beyond that. Storytelling is as exciting a pastime now as it was in days of yore, a good old-fashioned fairytale is always welcome. The imagination of a child kicks into high gear and their ingenuous minds go to work.
Even Einstein, the Godfather of imagination has something to say about fairy-tales; "If you want your children to be brilliant, read them fairy-tales. If you want them to be geniuses, read them more fairy-tales. Imagine a fairytale influencing a child to the extent that he or she could end up with a greater imagination than they already have, and possibly become the next great imagination of our times.
Albert Einstein's great intelligence and originality left us with a bundle of knowledge. His name is synonymous with genius. But he also credited his outstanding accomplishments to a greater thing, "I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world".
What's the moral of the story? The moral of the story is a child's imagination can encircle the world just the same as old an schooler's imagination. Fairy-tales can unlock a disillusioned mind and generate the most ingenuous of thoughts. More power can be added to a child's imagination, if we would only read them fairy-tales.
The author understands the struggles some children have reading. Enticing reading tools are necessary to stimulate the act, therefore, a complimentary mp3 download of her first novel, 'Nanny Reilly', together with a beautifully illustrated 99 page ebook is available for all children from her website http://www.nannyreilly.com
The author's books are listed with The Library of Congress and have recently been shelved and downloaded by the schools and libraries throughout the State of Montana.
You are welcome to use the articles below on your website or blog
Reading Development: What Will a Child's Tomorrows Be Like If Reading Isn't Part of Today?
To whom it may concern...,
I on occasion read to children at the local library. It is always a small group of kids with mom and or, dad, grandma or a chaperon. There is always room for plenty more. The 80 to 90 per cent of empty chairs is an indication of that.
This in turn led me to wonder, why are there so few kids here when the readings are advertised weeks in advance and reminders are constantly posted?
Do the parents know? If they do, are they too busy to take the kids? Do the children even want to go? Perhaps being well read is not as enticing as being well viewed, meaning TV?
Out of nothing more that curiosity with no particular agenda in mind, I decided to Google reading statistics for children.
I made a startling discovery on children's reading statistics in the U.S. and around the world. What I found out saddens me.
The few of many stats I am about to share with you, I dug up from The American Literacy Council. These facts are for the United States only. If I were to share with you the statistics for the poorer countries in the world, your mind would go into a tailspin.
Did you know that 40 to 45 percent of children never learn to read?
Did you know that 90 percent of children who cannot read at the ninth grade level dropout?
Did you know that in 2003, adults in the U.S. (who were once kids and are now parents) were tested for their reading proficiency and 87 percent were recorded as feeble. How sad is that?
I could easily fill documents with a serious number of more facts and statistics. Facts like where children end up as adults due to dropping out and being illiterate. But you already know their destiny.
You know why the prisons are full, why the poverty level in the U.S., the richest country in the world is deplorable. You know because you can see it and you read about it.
You and I have the ability to improve our minds our bodies our souls and our whole lives with the written word. We can read.
What if you couldn't read? What if you were looking for a job where you can thrive and grow and become all you can be but you couldn't find one because you are illiterate! You can't get past your name and address on the application?
What kind of future would be in store for you at that rate? I shudder to think of myself in that situation.
Now think about this. What if that was your child in those shoes, your niece, nephew, grandchild, friend's child, or any child at all. What would you do? I would certainly do something about it to help them on their journey so they can march on with confident strides into the future.
Yes, there are so many terrific kids who can read up a storm and they love it. Those kids as they get older graduate to reading the local newspaper and the Huffington Post.
Some of them have Blogs and websites. They surf the internet for information that will help them. They read books that broaden their minds and their horizons.
Many of those kids build an enterprise second to none because they got passed the ninth grade. They surged forward into the future with a library of books and a mindful of knowledge to increase their chances.
Do you want to know what the most powerful word in the English language is?
It's one of those small insignificant words that we all take for granted and use it on a daily basis.
It's one of those little words that magnifies itself beyond its own boundaries.
It's a little word that is most powerful when used with real meaning to make something possible through a specific action as a unity.
That little word with a big punch is "Let's".
Let's go to the library. Let's listen to a story. Let's read a book. Let's spell Mississippi. Let's sing the alphabet!
Let's go do it, means we walk beside a certain person or persons, we don't say here's what you have to do and point the way.
I leave you with a borrowed quote from one of my favorite English novelists and critics of all times, Aldous Huxely... in the hopes that one day you will take a child by the hand and say "Let's".
"Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant and interesting".
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